Transients!

Today was one of those rare, perfect days to be out in the Salish Sea. First, all the conditions were in our favor; the weather was warm, sunny, and the seas were calm and almost windless. Second, the wildlife was abundant; we spotted a large group of six to seven transient killer whales identified as T18s just outside of Friday Harbor. The transients were more active than usual, tail slapping, rolling around, and spy hopping. After taking a good look at the whales we were able to leisurely make our way around Spieden Island, stopping to view Steller sea lions off the south point, bald eagles in the trees, and mouflon sheep and sika deer along the grassy hills. Plus there were harbor seals hauled out on several small, rocky islands, basking in the sun. Then, as we were heading back through Spieden Channel, we came across the transient killer whales again! This time huge male joined the group, with a dorsal fin at least five feet tall. It was a spectacular site and perfect ending to an amazing day.

Kristen, Naturalist, San Juan Safaris

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